Lucy Boston

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Spring flowers, wonder, and a quilt goes to a wedding

Still cold and snowy as I finished up a commission quilt this week...
so a little feeling of Spring is in the air
with these Spring-looking Dresden flowers:
A young gal is going to use this quilt
(pieced by her maternal grandmother) 
in her wedding this summer.
Won't that be such a special part of her wedding memories?
I know, that's really reaching for Spring on my part. :)
Anyway, I  got to finish this one! 
When the quilt top came here for some finishing help,
it had basting only in more that a handful of blocks.
The blocks that were already hand-appliqued down still had their basting stitches.  There were a few background fabric squares that were frayed to the point of being out of square.  It definitely needed some TLC.

Here's a before picture (notice the missing corner blocks):
For the repairs, besides all the hand stitching that needed to be done,
I traced a matching Dresden template,
found some old fabrics
and a couple of new reproductions
and stitched up four new corner blocks.
I layered it on the long-arm machine and started meandering:
I did flowery petals in each of the Dresden blades,
and a loop and leaf meander over the creamy muslin background.
Here's a better picture of the hand-guided quilting from the back:
Whenever I come across unfinished quilt tops like this it makes me wonder...

I wonder why there were no corner pieces made...
was it made this way purposefully
to drape around the corners of a four-poster bed?
(though the 'drop' is only 8 inches).

Did she run out of background fabric so she couldn't finish it?

I wonder, if after all of those
Dresden and half Dresden plates
were hand-stitched and hand-appliqued down and
then the blocks were hand-pieced together,
that the maker just didn't feel like stitching any more?

Or possibly, as there were definitely two different styles of hand-stitching,
she had worked on this particular
quilt over years and years,
(possibly after her eyesight had dimmed)
in between other needed quilts
and just never got back to the remaining Dresdens?

I know I have unfinished quilt tops like the last scenario...
instead of making a decision on the final border or blocks or pieces, I just tuck it away and work on the next quilt that 'needs' to be done for some reason or other.

But back to the quilt at hand: 
after I did the Dresden-piecing and hand-stitching,
then repairing,
quilting and labeling,
putting in those final stitches in the binding,
and seeing this beautiful quilt come to life...
I feel that I should dig out the almost done quilt tops
from my closet,
the ones that I've tucked away unfinished
and show them some lovin' too...
so  that I do not leave quilty questions and wonder. 
Quilts can only talk so much.

Don't you wish quilts could tell their whole life story?

Thanks, Stella,
for letting me finish this beauty
for your son's wedding.
It is such a nice feeling knowing
that this quilt will attend a family wedding this summer.


  1. It is a lovely quilt and even lovelier story. So happy to see it finished and it will be such a beautiful addition to a summer wedding.

  2. I love your thoughts on this quilt. I hope you plan to send a copy of your words to the girl getting married, it will add so much depth to the quilt's history. The finish is absolutely wonderful!

  3. I also love your thoughts about this quilt and the reasons it could have been left unfinished. I know I have plenty that are not finished that will sure leave MANY questions lol.
    Love how you finished it!
    T in TX


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